drug and alcohol jobs

Firing Employees in Drug and Alcohol Jobs

When you employ people for drug and alcohol jobs, you don’t want to have to think of letting them go.  However, this does happen and for a variety of reasons.  Maybe it’s a sober living home and the employee is no longer sober.  That’s an issue for sure.   Some issues with employment are “coaching” issues and other are simply non-negotiable and grounds for termination.  This is never easy as it costs the employer money and puts the lost employee in emotional and financial hardship.  However, if you are in a situation where you need to think about firing an employee, consider these items:

Firing Employees in Drug and Alcohol Jobs

  • Expectations.  Were expectations clearly set prior to this point?  If you’re disappointed in something, that’s all well and good but if the employee wasn’t aware of the expectations being placed on them, you could have a difficult road.  firing employees drug and alcohol jobs
  • Warnings.  Was the employee told at any point in time that their performance was not acceptable or was slipping?  Was this documented in a performance evaluation or any sort of written warning?  If not, you may wish to start that process now as it’s always possible to help an employee improve their performance if they know that it is lacking and that they are in jeopardy of losing their job.
  • The Termination.  If it comes down to an actual termination, be prepared.  You may wish to discuss things with an attorney if you are unsure about your position.  Be ready to address the important logistics of things like: last day, severance, benefits, counseling, etc.  You may need the help of your HR manager for this meeting.  Be kind.  Don’t rush out of the room in order to save your skin and your psyche.  This is likely a traumatic experience for the person being fired and you should be ready to listen respectfully and encourage them to move on.
  • The Team.  What many manager don’t realize is that a firing affects more than just the person being fired.  Their co-workers and team are affected as well and should be addressed.  Talk to them about the implications for them, if any and be sensitive to their feelings.  Help them to redirect their energy back towards work and more positive endeavors.

Firing an employee in drug and alcohol jobs is never easy but many times works out for the best.  What was once a toxic work environment becomes fresh again.   Culture in an organization can become renewed as other employees see the value that management places on certain aspects of work and integrity.  Not to mention the fact that you could be doing the person that you are firing an incredible service.  It not uncommon at all to hear from people that have been fired that it was “the best thing that ever happened to them” because it opened doors for them that they would have never otherwise pursued.

The bottom line as employer is always behave ethically, legally, with compassion and kindness but to let that ax fall when it is time.

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